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  1. I was surprised that they had already decided what to do.
  2. I was surprised that they had decided what to do already.

Which sentence is correct?

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english.stackexchange.com/search?q=already - please pay attention to the suggestions offered when you write the question –  mplungjan Oct 30 '13 at 10:49
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1 Answer 1

Already normally refers to something that is in the present or recent past. It is mainly used in questions and affirmative sentences and usually expresses surprise that something has happened sooner than expected.

When do you expect Polly to arrive? 
~ *She's already here! Haven't you seen her?*

Can you give me a hand with the layout for this article. 
~ *No, I'm sorry, I'm already late. I have to leave right now.*

Can you help me move those boxed upstairs? 
~ *I've already moved them.*

Have you finished that typing already? 
~*Yes, I finished it about five minutes ago.*

*By the age of three, Mozart had already learnt to play the piano.*

already - position in sentence

Note from the above examples that already usually occupy mid position in the clause.

So your first sentence is more appropriate.

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But, by implication, the second sentence doesn't change the meaning. This is because 'already' can only qualify a verb in the past tense. So there is no possibility of it qualifying 'do'. If however I said 'It has been reported already who killed Harry' and then changed the position of 'already' so that it read 'It has been reported who already killed Harry'. Then there would be confusion as to meaning. –  WS2 Oct 30 '13 at 11:02
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